Pumpkin Caramel Cinnamon Rolls Recipe

Pumpkin Caramel Cinnamon Rolls | Happy Simple Living blog

Photo by Susan Barnson Hayward for Gibbs Smith

The flavor of pumpkin spice seems to be everywhere right now, and is even the subject of some good-natured debate; some folks are complaining of Pumpkin Spice overload with so many manufacturers jumping on the #PS bandwagon. The TODAY show is even running an online poll where viewers can vote on whether the pumpkin spice craze has “gone too far.”

Pumpkin It Up cookbook by Eliza CrossIf you’re overloaded on #PS, you may wish to skip this post. If you’re a pumpkin spice lover, read on!

Today I’m sharing one of my favorite recipes from my newest cookbook, Pumpkin It Up! (128 pages, hardback, $16.99; Gibbs Smith, Publisher). Perfect for a weekend breakfast or brunch, these flaky cinnamon rolls are filled with a pumpkin spice-pecan mixture and drizzled with a caramel icing while they’re still warm. The rolls are extra easy because they begin with a tube of refrigerated crescent roll dough. If you like, you can use an organic brand such as Immaculate.

For the filling, you can use canned pumpkin or make your own pumpkin puree; I’ve included complete instructions after the cinnamon roll recipe. Steaming or baking the pumpkin is quite easy, and pumpkin puree freezes really well so that you can have it on hand whenever you get a pumpkin spice craving.

Now is a great time to visit your favorite farmer’s market or pumpkin patch and buy good cooking pumpkins. Stay away from the gigantic Jack O’Lantern pumpkins, which tend to be tough and stringy, and look for look for smaller, sweeter baking varieties. Some of my favorites are Little Giant, Cinnamon Girl, Baby Pam, Amish Pie and Winter Luxury.

Here’s the recipe:

Pumpkin Caramel Cinnamon Rolls

  • 1 can (8 ounces) refrigerated crescent rolls or seamless dough sheet
  • 1/3 cup cooked or canned pumpkin puree
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened, divided
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar, divided
  • 2 tablespoons milk, divided
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9-inch round cake pan.

If using crescent rolls, unroll dough and separate in 2 long rectangles. Overlap long sides 1/2 inch to form 1 large rectangle. Press seam and perforations to seal. If using dough sheet, unroll dough and pat in large rectangle.

In a small bowl, combine the pumpkin, 4 tablespoons butter, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 1 tablespoon milk, pie spice, and salt, and stir until well blended. Spread the mixture over the dough and sprinkle with pecans. Starting at long side, roll up; pinch seam to seal. Cut in 12 equal slices and arrange cut side up in prepared pan. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until rolls are golden brown. Cool in pan on wire rack for 15 minutes.

Heat remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a small saucepan until melted. Stir in remaining 1/4 cup brown sugar and remaining 1 tablespoon milk; cook over medium low heat 1 minute. Cool for 5 minutes. Stir in vanilla and 1/4 cup powdered sugar and beat until well blended, adding more powdered sugar if needed until desired consistency is reached. Drizzle rolls with icing. Makes 12 rolls.

Oven-Cooked Pumpkin Puree

  • 1 medium pie pumpkin, about 4 pounds
  • 1/2 cup water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Wash the pumpkin and cut out the top and stem with a sharp knife. Lay on a cutting board and carefully cut in half. Scrape out stringy pulp and seeds. (Rinse and reserve seeds to make Roasted Pumpkin Seeds, if desired.)

Cut pumpkin in large pieces and arrange skin-side up in a roasting pan. Pour water in the bottom of the pan and cover with aluminum foil. Bake 45–60 minutes, or until pumpkin is soft and easily pierced with a fork. Cool to room temperature.

Scrape the soft pulp from the skin into a food processor or heavy-duty blender, discarding the skin. Pulse until evenly pureed, adding a little water if necessary to make a smooth puree. Alternately, mash the pulp in a large bowl with a potato masher or run it through a food mill. If finished puree is too watery, drain in a fine mesh strainer for 30 minutes.

The puree can be used immediately or refrigerated, covered, and used within 3 days. The puree may also be frozen, tightly wrapped, or stored in an airtight container for up to 6 months. Makes about 8 cups.

Steamed Pumpkin Puree

  • 1 small pie pumpkin, about 2 pounds
  • 1 cup water

Wash the pumpkin and cut out the top and stem with a sharp knife. Lay on a cutting board and carefully cut in half. Scrape out stringy pulp and seeds. (Rinse and reserve seeds to make Roasted Pumpkin Seeds, if desired.) Cut pumpkin in 4-inch pieces.

Stovetop steaming method: In a large pot fitted with a steamer basket, heat water to boiling. Add the pumpkin, reduce heat to a simmer, and cover. Cook until pumpkin is tender, about 30 minutes. Drain and cool to room temperature.

Microwave steaming method: Place the pumpkin pieces in a microwave-safe bowl, add the water, cover, and cook on high until pumpkin is fork tender, about 15–20 minutes depending on microwave. Cool to room temperature.

Scrape the soft pulp from the skin into a food processor or heavy-duty blender, discarding the skin. Pulse until evenly pureed, adding a little water if necessary to make a smooth puree. Alternately, mash the pulp in a large bowl with a potato masher or run it through a food mill. If finished puree is too watery, drain in a fine mesh strainer for 30 minutes.

The puree can be used immediately or refrigerated, covered, and used within 3 days. The puree may also be frozen, tightly wrapped, or stored in an airtight container for up to 6 months. Makes about 4 cups.

Hugs,

The signature for Eliza Cross

P.S. You might also enjoy this recipe for Pumpkin Quick Bread.

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

Day 13 of the January Money Diet – Plan a Garden

Plan your garden during the January Money Diet

My sister and I talked right after Christmas, and agreed that there is something about the arrival of January that immediately makes us start thinking about seeds and plants and gardens.

Do you love to daydream about planting a garden in the spring? Now is the perfect time to begin making plans and sketching out ideas for your ideal plot.

In the Day #4 post  (“Figure Out What to Eat“), I enjoyed reading comments from a number of you who grow your own food and preserve it so you can enjoy it all year. We do this on a small scale, freezing things like tomatoes and cherries and pesto, but I’d like to get more serious about growing more fresh fruits and veggies this year.

Strategies for Every Space

If you live in an apartment, you might be able to choose plants that thrive in your climate and can be grown in containers. My friend Jerry grows cherry tomatoes year ’round from a pot in a sunny window in his downtown Denver apartment.

Do you have access to a roof or balcony? The Kitchn posted an informative article on rooftop gardening.

If you have a small yard or garden plot, you may enjoy the “Square Foot Gardening” method to maximize your yield from a small space.

If you have a typical yard, you might be inspired by the Urban Homestead website. This family grows 3 tons of food on 1/10th of an acre!

If you don’t have a yard but long to really dig in the dirt, you might check out the community gardens in your area. The American Community Gardening Association has a nifty interactive map to help you find one near you.

Time to Daydream

It’s always fun to peruse the new seed catalogs and online offerings each year to see what new varieties have been introduced. These are some of my favorite seed companies:

The site MicroEcoFarming.com has a wealth of information about growing your own food — including tips for how to sell what you grow as an extra revenue source. You may also want to check out the Happy Simple Gardening Pinterest board, where I collect photos and ideas for growing good food and flowers (with a minimum amount of labor, naturally).

How About You?

Would you like to start planning your garden? Check out some gardening sites, sketch out ideas, and make a list of the seed varieties you want to plant this year. If you don’t have a garden, daydream about what you’d like to grow someday. Leave a comment on this page if you participate in this challenge.

We’d especially love to hear about any edible varieties you’ve grown successfully in the past. If you have favorite gardening sites and sources, we’d love to hear about those, too.

Happy daydreaming,

The signature for Eliza Cross

Photo:   Elspeth Briscoe

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

Win An Assortment of Bob’s Red Mill Organic Quinoa

Bob's Red Mill Quinoa

I rarely feature products on Happy Simple Living, and when I do it’s for something I’m truly crazy about. You may know that I’m a big quinoa fan, and not just because it’s incredibly nutritious. I love quinoa’s nutty taste and fluffy texture, but since since this lovable little seed gets relegated to so many bland, diet, low-fat, low-cal recipes, I thought quinoa deserved its own cookbook showcasing its wonderful flavor and versatility.

In the back of The Quinoa Quookbook, I list a handful of top organic quinoa sources—including Bob’s Red Mill. Unlike some corporate brand names, there really is a Bob at the helm of this employee-owned company, Bob Moore. Bob’s quinoa is a very high quality, organically grown product that’s positively delicious. I’m also an enthusiastic fan of the company’s blog, which features wonderful recipes and helpful information about grains and cooking techniques.

Just in time for back to school and autumn cooking, the nice folks at Bob’s Red Mill will generously give away an assortment of three full-sized packages of quinoa to one lucky Happy Simple Living reader in the U.S. or Canada. If you win, you’ll receive a pound each of their white quinoa, red quinoa and pretty tri-color quinoa.

White quinoa is the most common variety, and I use it in baked goods, appetizers, salads, dinners and soups. With its pretty color I like to use red quinoa for recipes like carrot cake and meatballs, and the tri-color variety is fun when you want the quinoa to really star in a dish.

To enter the giveaway, simply answer this question:

What are you looking forward to this autumn?

Whether it’s the return of football season or putting on your favorite flannel shirt, just dash off a quick response in the comments below and you’ll be automatically entered. The giveaway is open to readers in the U.S. and Canada through next next Tuesday, September 2 at midnight MST. I’ll draw one random name from everyone who comments, and announce the winner next week.

Thanks so much to our friends at Bob’s Red Mill for sponsoring this giveaway, and good luck!

UPDATE: This giveaway is now closed, and congratulations to our lucky winner Laurel C.!

Hugs,

The signature for Eliza Cross

The Quinoa QuookbookP.S. If you’d like your very own copy of The Quinoa Quookbook, the Kindle version is on sale this week only for just 99 cents. (You don’t have to own a Kindle; just use the Kindle reading app to enjoy on virtually any computer or device.) The paperback version is also on sale at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. This book contains 100 tried-and-true recipes featuring nutty, nutritious, delicious quinoa, and once you try it you might find you add it to just about everything.

P.P.S. I wasn’t compensated in any way for this giveaway—it’s just for fun!

 

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

Eliminate Weeds When They are Small, and Other Thoughts of Spring

Pulling dandelions

It’s the first week of April, and I hope it doesn’t sound like I’m bragging but our front yard is mostly free of dandelions. You heard me right.

We had snow followed by warm temperatures this week, and the ground is nice and soft. So I spent a very pleasant hour in the sunshine, absorbing Vitamin D and pulling dandelions – many of them very small. Of course, dandelion season hasn’t really started and we don’t use chemicals so the battle has just begun. But still. Today, I feel good about myself.

What about the back yard, you ask?

The back yard?

Dandelions

The back yard is a topic for another day, my friends. Because as I was pulling up the small dandelions in front, I was thinking about parallels to my life. Do you do that when you garden—sometimes think deep thoughts? I find that I do.

Deep Thought

So today, as I was pulling up small dandelions I was thinking about the areas of life where I might figuratively “pull weeds” earlier, with positive benefits. Here are some of the ideas I had:

  • Paying off small debts before they accumulate into bigger debts and big problems.
  • Aside from an occasional splurge, not over-eating or drinking too much wine. Weighing myself every day, and making adjustments as necessary.
  • Staying in touch with people I care about, and not letting too much time go by before we connect.
  • Speaking up if something is bothering me, instead of keeping it inside and giving resentment a chance to grow.
  • Setting aside quiet time every day for rest and reflection, so my brain doesn’t get burned out.
  • Asking for forgiveness quickly, and being quicker to forgive others.

How about you? Do you have any figurative weed-pulling strategies? Heck, I’d love to hear your literal weed-pulling strategies, too, since I’ve got that back yard to think about…

Hugs,

The signature for Eliza Cross

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

7 Ways to Politely Discourage Bindweed in Your Garden

Bindweed at Happy Simple Living blog

Let’s talk about bindweed.

Here at the urban homestead, we have some spectacular patches of bindweed. The weed seems to especially enjoy growing in the vegetable gardens, but it also likes to twist its tendrils around the flowers and choke them when I’m not paying attention. It climbs up fences.

Bindweed at Happy Simple Living

 

It grows up in the most inconvenient places, like smack in the middle of the creeping wooly thyme.

Bindweed and wooly thyme

 

Give it the slightest little space, like the 1/4 inch gap between the raised garden and the paving stone, and it will creep in like a bad boyfriend.

Bindweed grows at the Happy simple Living blog

What’s the deal with bindweed, anyway? Why is it such a pesky weed?

Well, garden trivia enthusiasts, allow me to share…

8 Fun Facts About Bindweed

  • Sideways Cadillac at Happy Simple Living blogBindweed has a fancy side. It also goes by the names of “Wild Morning Glory” and “Creeping Jenny.” No offense to my readers named Jenny.
  • Field bindweed produces a tap root which can penetrate up to 10 feet in depth. So to get to the end of the root, you’ll simply need to dig a hole in your garden roughly the depth of a Cadillac. Is that going to be a problem?
  • The multiple roots that grow laterally from the tap root can extend as far as 30 feet. To put this in perspective, imagine George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Henry Cavill, Jon Hamm and Gerard Butler lying head to toe in your garden. Isn’t it helpful to have visual references?
  • Bindweed can serve as a host for several viruses that affect potatoes, tomatoes and other crops.
  • As you probably know if you’ve tried to pull it, bindweed stems break easily. When fragmented, the underground plant parts will produce new, adorable little infant plants.
  • One plant can produce as many as 14 precious little shoots in one year, each of which grows 1 ½ to 4 ½ feet in the first season.
  • Each plant is capable of producing 25 to 300 cute little seeds.
  • Due to an extremely hard seed coat, the seeds can remain viable in the soil for up to 50 years. It’s sobering to realize that my bindweed seeds will likely outlive me.

Whew, that’s one feisty weed. So naturally, I wondered if this tenacious weed could have any lovable qualities. If you share the view that each and every living thing on earth has its place and purpose, you’ll probably smile when you read about one of bindweed’s most important roles. Allow me to present:

1 Cuddly Fact About Bindweed

Which is why I’ve generously opened our back yard to all scientists who need more bindweed samples.

Free bindweed at Happy Simple Living

That’s just the kind of selfless, philanthropic person I am.

Aside from finding willing takers or digging to China to reach the end of your bindweed roots, what’s an organic gardener to do?

Readers EcoCatLady and RZG123 asked for my advice about dealing with bindweed on my frugal gardening post How To Avoid $100 Tomatoes, and I’m glad they did because it made me feel, for a few moments, like Dear Abby or Dr. Phil. My readers think I know about such things! I thought to myself. It was a delicious moment that ended too soon after I decided that I, a Gardening and Weed Expert, should probably go water my parched garden. Which is when I discovered that a new plant had quietly begun its sneaky, determined climb to overtake the garden faucet.

bindweed growing at happy simple living blog

Time’s a-wastin,’ my friends, and your bindweed has probably grown another ten feet while you’ve been reading this blog post. So without further adieu, I present you with:

7 Fun Ways to Control Bindweed

  • Discourage it young. Young seedlings can be destroyed when cut several inches below the soil. Whatever you do, don’t wait until the weeds are pre-teens.
  • Get heavyhanded with mulch. Bindweed likes sunshine, so mulch can discourage it.
  • Till it. Hoeing, digging, or tilling more mature field bindweed every one to two weeks for several seasons can reduce plant vigor.
  • Torch it. Some gardeners have had luck zapping bindweed with a weed torch, which sounds kinda fun. It’s a propane tank with a little torch that burns up the weed.
  • Attack it. My sister, who has a small farm and very green thumb, told me about bindweed mites – blessed little bugs that eat bindweed. Some states have programs where you can obtain the mites for free; check with your county extension office.
  • Fry it. Eileen, a moderator at GardenStew, has a unique way of dealing with the weed. She reports: ”I push short lengths of garden cane into the soil next to the shoots and wrap the stems around the canes. This stops the bindweed from entwining itself around other plants. I then cut off the bottom of 2 liter plastic water (or juice) bottles and remove the cap. I pop the bottle over the cane and bindweed and spray into the neck of the bottle with a concentrated salt mixture. I then replace the cap. Before you know it the plant has shriveled and died as the heat in the bottle ensures the salt burns it very effectively.”
  • Embrace your bindweed. Train it to grow on topiary forms, and tell your neighbors it’s your prized Creeping Jenny. (Sorry again, readers named Jenny.)
How about you? Is bindweed a problem in your garden, and have you found an organic way to control it? I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments.

Happy hoeing from your Gardening and Weed Expert,

The signature for Eliza Cross

 

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

Rabbits Enjoy Nice Salad Bar in Our Garden

Rabbit ate plants at Happy Simple Living blog

If you’re a pea plant trying to grow in our garden this summer, you’ve had your share of challenges. First, you had to endure two snowstorms with hard freezes. Then, just as you were beginning to thrive and feel good about life, a rabbit snuck in the garden and ate most of your foliage and tender shoots. What’s a pea plant to do?

Because I’m trying to be a frugal gardener this year, after surveying the damage this morning I was determined to try and solve the rabbit problem without spending any cash. So I rummaged around in the shed and found some bamboo stakes that I drove between the openings in the wire fence, about four inches in the ground.

Deterring rabbits at Happy Simple Living blog

Bamboo stake fencing at Happy Simple Living blog

Then I placed a fierce looking owl (or tacky plastic owl, depending on your point of view) to guard the plants.

Fake owl to scare off rabbits at Happy Simple Living blog

Finally, I sprinkled some black pepper on and around the nibbled plants.

Black Pepper to deter rabbits at Happy Simple Living blog

I got this tip from the Rutgers website, which also recommended bone meal or, um, blood as rabbit deterrents. (They don’t say where one might obtain this blood, and I really don’t want to know.) I’ve also heard that cayenne pepper will do the trick. Other rabbit deterrents I’ve read about–but have no experience with–include spraying hot pepper sauce around the garden, planting marigolds or cilantro around the border, and scattering dog hair (something we always have plenty of around here) near the plants. Seems kind of unsightly, but it just might work!

I love seeing the bunnies in the back yard, I really do, so I hope these measures deter them from eating our peas and other garden plants.

Rabbit on Happy Simple Living blog

How about you? Are you dealing with critters in your garden, and if so, have you found any solutions that work?

Enjoy the weekend and happy digging,

The signature for Eliza Cross

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

Make Your Own Healthy Sweetener

Healthy sweetener at Happy Simple Living blog

Several years ago, a new sweetener came out called Sun Crystals. Sun Crystals sweetener was a blend of stevia and pure cane sugar. I loved Sun Crystals! Sun Crystals tasted great in my morning coffee, but didn’t give me that spikey-blood-sugar feeling or make me feel guilty about using a chemical sweetener. Sun Crystals changed my life!

Sun Crystals at Happy Simple Living blog

So naturally, they stopped making Sun Crystals.

For a while, I bought bags of Sun Crystals on eBay, even though they were advertised as “rare” and thus, worthy of increasingly bigger bids. A bag that was once $7 started at $30 and went up from there. But soon even the contraband Sun Crystals were gone, really gone–extinct like flip phones and tan M & Ms.

Then the proverbial light bulb (an LED, of course) went off. Why couldn’t I make my own Sun Crystals? And so I set out on a quest to somehow recreate the magical formula of Sun Crystals. I purchased powdered organic stevia and organic cane sugar and began tinkering. After moments and moments of painstaking trial and error, I cracked the secret code and was once again able to enjoy guilt-free morning coffee and afternoon tea.

During the process I learned that my beloved Sun Crystals probably hadn’t been all that healthy after all, since the mixture contained maltodextrin—an additive that is usually derived chemically from GMO feed corn. I guess the word “natural” on the bag should have tipped me off!

Since many of my friends have commented on the jar of white powder I keep on the counter, I’m going to share my Top Secret recipe. It will take you less than one minute to make. Are you ready?

Happy Simple Homemade Sun Crystalz Recipe

  • 1 cup organic cane sugar
  • 1 cup organic stevia powder

Directions: Combine cane sugar and stevia in a jar:

Homemade stevia sweetener

Shake well to combine. Makes 2 cups.

Enjoy!

The signature for Eliza Cross

P.S. What’s your favorite sweetener? I’d love to hear…

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

Spring Gardening and How To Protect Plants From Freezing

Springtime in Colorado is always an adventure, but this spring has been a doozy for gardeners. After record-making snowfall of 20.7 inches here in Denver during April, I was pleased to see the pea shoots finally emerging, somewhat timidly, on April 30:

PeaShoots

But the forecast called for snow and a very hard frost, so that night I pulled the cages out of the ground and covered the pea shoots with a lovely pink knit fabric remnant. I chose this fabric because it’s soft and also 100% polyester, which I hoped would help insulate the plants.

Cover plants to protect from frost

It’s a good thing the peas were covered with their polyester blanket, because this is how our back yard looked when we woke up yesterday, which happened to be May Day:

Spring snow at Happy Simple Living blog

Happy May Day!

Here’s the garden where the peas are planted:

Peas covered with snow at Happy Simple Living blog

We had record-breaking low temperatures last night of 19 degrees F, which smashed the old record of 22 degrees set in 1954. But today? The snow’s melting fast. Here’s the same scene 24 hours later:

Spring snow at Happy Simple Living blog

Happy May 2!

Once the sun had warmed the ground and most of the snow had melted, I pulled back the pink polyester fabric to check on the peas and was relieved to see that they had survived another hard frost:

Peas emerge from the snow at Happy Simple Living blog

Have you planted seeds or plants yet in your garden? If so, are you having to deal with wild weather? I’d love to hear how you’re coping, and here’s to hardiness and resilience—not only for our plants, but for those of us trying to help them grow!

Hugs,

The signature for Eliza Cross

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

Free Book Giveaway: Win a Copy of The Mini Farm Guide to Composting

Mini Farm Guide to Composting at Happy Simple Living blog

If you’ve got a certifiable case of Spring Gardening Fever, I’ve got a book that will help. The Mini Farming Guide to Composting: Self-Sufficiency from Your Kitchen to Your Backyard by Brett L. Markham is a comprehensive guide to making your own rich, cost-effective compost. Markham makes a compelling case that the best way to enjoy enhanced nutrition and save money with a home garden is to make your own soil-enhancing compost.

I wholeheartedly agree. While we don’t do it on a large scale here, we do get enormous satisfaction in the cycle of composting leaves, kitchen scraps, grass, etc. and seeing the mixture morph into a rich organic matter that we can use to greatly improve our garden soil.

After an introduction extolling the virtues of making your own compost (it’s cost effective, increases soil fertility, reduces bacterial and fungal diseases, and more), The Mini Farm Guide to Composting logically begins with a chapter on evaluating your own soil so you know how to best improve it. Markham provides detailed information about soil testing and the additives and processes that can make your dirt more fertile, Myrtle. (I just had to say that.)

Other chapters break down the science of composting and various options – Anaerobic Composting (a simple compost pile is a good example), Aerobic Composting (I always wear a leotard and leg warmers for this), Indoor Mesophilic Composting (Markham’s method for an indoor bucket composting system), Vermicomposting (the farmin’ of worms, Vern), Sheet Composting (some call this lasagna gardening because of the layering involved) and more.

The Mini Farming Guide to Composting is 200 pages and retails for $14.95 USD. Skyhorse Publishing has generously provided a complimentary copy for one lucky Happy Simple Living reader.

To enter the giveaway, just leave a comment below about your current composting situation. If you don’t compost, would you like to try? If you do compost, do you use a pile, or one of those fancy twirling composters, or something in between? Are you havin’ trouble with your worms, Vern? Or would you like to produce more compost, or learn how to speed up the process? Let’s dish about compost, shall we?

The giveaway closes next Monday, April 8, at midnight MST, and is open to residents of the United States and Canada.

Here’s to diggin’ in the dirt, Bert,

The signature for Eliza Cross

About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.